Modular construction has become a popular option for many builders and construction project owners. Unlike traditional construction, modular construction involves the manufacturing of prefabricated modules or units that are assembled on-site. These modules can be used to construct anything from houses and office buildings to larger structures like bridges and stadiums.
Modular construction has gained popularity in various types of projects, including the construction of different types of buildings such as offices, hospitals, schools, and social housing. A significant portion of the construction process takes place in a controlled factory environment, offering specific features that impact costs, project completion times, and logistical coordination.
As with any construction method, it’s important to consider the advantages and disadvantages of modular construction. In this article, we will explore some key considerations to keep in mind when deciding if modular construction is the right option for your project.
Is modular construction suitable for large or small-sized projects?
While modular construction can be used to build a wide variety of structures, from small prefabricated houses to multi-story buildings, not all projects are suitable for modular construction.
In general, modular construction is more suitable for medium to large-sized projects where multiple prefabricated units can be utilized. As the project size increases, the number of modules required also increases, which can result in greater efficiency in the manufacturing process. By relying on designing and producing construction modules in series, significant cost savings can be achieved compared to traditional construction.
For smaller projects, modular construction may be less cost-effective due to the associated costs of manufacturing the modules and shipping them to the construction site.
When considering project size, it’s also important to take into account the physical limitations of the construction site. Prefabricated modules need to be transported to the construction site, which can pose challenges if the site has limited access or if there are restrictions on the size of modules that can be transported.
Can modular construction accommodate complex designs and structures?
Modular construction is not limited to simple designs or structures. In fact, modular construction methods have experienced significan shifts in recent years and have been used to build complex and architecturally advanced buildings.
When evaluating if modular construction is suitable for a project with complex design and structure, it’s important to consider the level of customization and detail desired. Modular construction is based on mass production, which means that some customized elements may be more expensive and complex to build in a production line environment.
Although modular construction is based on the repetition of standard modules, it doesn’t mean that modular structures cannot be specially tailored to each project. In fact, most modular structure manufacturers offer a wide range of customization options to meet the specific needs of their clients.
However, it’s important to note that as a structure is custom-made, its cost will increase, and the manufacturing and construction time will take longer as well. Therefore, builders should carefully evaluate their customization needs and thoroughly assess construction budget estimates and construction schedules before deciding if modular construction is the right option for their project.
Transportation and Assembly: Logistics for modular construction projects
Storage capacity is another important aspect to consider, as in any type of project. Project managers must make sure that the warehouses have enough space and height to safely stack and organize the modules. Each module must be stored efficiently before delivery, taking into account shipment order to the construction site for assembly.
Modular construction can encompass complex designs and structures, which is also a key factor when planning transportation from the warehouse to the construction site. Logistics coordination in construction projects is essential, as in any type of project. For the successful development of a modular construction project, it’s necessary to ensure that the modules are delivered in the correct order and assembled appropriately to guarantee the structural integrity of the building.
It may be necessary to deliver the larger and heavier modules first, as their installation may require special equipment and additional labor. It’s also important to consider the site access restrictions and plan the module delivery accordingly.
Regarding the previous point, logistics planning for transportation routes is another highly critical aspect. Construction Project Planners must consider height and weight limitations on roads and bridges that may restrict the transportation of modules. Transportation and logistics can affect significantly the total cost of a modular construction project.
As we have explained in this article, when evaluating modular construction for any project you are building, it’s essential to assess the risks and disadvantages, and carefully plan logistics and warehouse management for a successful project outcome.
Learn more about how to optimize construction processes and streamline your construction work, whether it is modular or traditional, with project Gantt planning and construction progress control capabilities that BrickControl has to offer.